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Monday, February 25, 2008

Barnes and Nobles Rocks; Rhinebeck Swings

First of all, many many thanks to both the Barnes & Noble bookstore in Greenwich Village, NYC, and to Oblong Books and Music in Rhinebeck, NY, for their generosity in hosting me over the weekend. Both events went well, although both were small; maybe 8 or 10 people in the city, and 6 or 7 in Rhinebeck. But that was okay, it just added to the intimacy of the events, and gave me the chance to talk to people face-to-face, which is how I like to do it.

Above is a photo of the tremendously kind Dick Hermans, who runs Oblong Books and Music. I have to say, I've been in a lot of bookstores in my life, and this is one of the finest I've ever seen. And I'm not just saying that because they were nice to me... Oblong's book selection is outstanding, especially their fiction, and the music range is impressive too, especially for a relatively small store. I urge anyone with an interest to take a ride out through Rhinebeck sometime and check it out. Rhinebeck is a fun little town in and of itself, and home of the famous Aerodrome that offers weekly air shows using restored World War I biplanes and triplanes.
(The fact that, in the above photo, I appear to be falling asleep, has nothing to do with either the own or the bookstore, but is just the side effect of my recent change in medication. Oh, come on, I'm kidding.)
In both venues I read for about 25 minutes from the new book, then took questions, some of which focused on the material in the book (monster movies, in particular) and some which were more general about how I go about writing anything at all. (Typical question: do I make an outline? Answer: no.) People also askes about living in Pakistan, my perception of events there, and whether I thought the US media reflected those events accurately. (Answer: no.) So all in all, the two events, each about an hour long, were interesting and fun both for me and--I hope--for the people who attended.

Special mention must be made of my number one fan, Lori from Pennsylvania, who drove up from the Poconos to attend the first evening's reading at the B&N on the Upper West Side--the event that got cancelled. I went up to that store anyway, on the off chance that some people might show after reading this blog, and lo! there was Lori and her pal (now my pal too) Sunshine, looking baffled at the guy behind the counter who was explainig patiently that nope, Dave Maine wasn't due to appear that night... Anyway we ended up sitting for coffee for an hour and, once again, having a great time talking about just about everything. So that was time well spent--thanks, Lori & Sunshine.

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